Helpful Hints

1. Begin by first reading each section thoroughly.

2. Create a mental image of what it is you are trying to accomplish. (set a goal)

3. Develop in your own mind a sequential (stepwise) method for working through the section.

4. Turn on your calculator, and use this handbook as a guide to achieve your goal.

5. Don't give up if you get frustrated. START again from step 1 as that is where most problems arise.

When you are positively, absolutely "stuck" ask a fellow classmate for help. If that is not successful ask your instructor. You can always e-mail me. Don't despair you will "get it." Of course it is up to you to study in a timely fashion. Do not wait until the day before the test to try to learn how to operate this calculator.
My goal is to create a handbook that will help you. If you have any "magic" words or other comments on how to improve this supplement please send them by e-mail as I will be constantly revising this to be more "Student Friendly"

Important Note: If you purchased a used TI-83PLUS your first step is to return the calculator to its original default settings. Follow these steps: Turn ON the calculator.

Press This will clear all List
Press To reset the calculator.

It is also a good idea to follow these steps when beginning each new section (problem). This will help you avoid most unwanted "ERROR" messages.

Concerning Error Messages:

The most common error is "ERR INVALID DIM"

If you see this error it probably indicates that a "STAT PLOT" is still "ON".

You simply need to go to STAT PLOT( Y=) and turn it "OFF."

!!!!! When starting a new problem you should make sure all STAT PLOTS are OFF and that your LISTS are cleared. This will avoid many errors. It is a good idea to begin each new problem from the home screen. !!!!!

One feature of the TI-83 is the use of Scientific Notation when displayed values are of extreme quantities. (i.e. 2.33454332E-7 is the calculator's notation for the value 0.000000233454332) When reading a displayed value take care to read across the entire line. The calculator will always use Scientific Notation for extreme values whether it is set in Scientific MODE or not. Be sure you are familiar with Scientific Notation.
Lastly, the TI-83 can convert fractions to decimals and decimals to fractions. (Some decimal approximations represent irrational numbers and of course they cannot be converted into fractions)
For example: if you have the fraction 7/11 on your screen and you want to convert it to a decimal

press : MATH (This is the decimal approximation for 7/11) .6363636364 will be displayed.

To convert it to a fraction
press: MATH 7/11 will be displayed.